Aug 2, 2013

My name is Sebrina Davis-Doakes. I am 42 years old and have been a powerlifter for three years.  Powerlifting has become such an influential part of my life that my powerlifting goals motivate me on and off the platform.  More than anything, I see each meet I compete in as an opportunity to push my competitive drive and athletic performance to a new plateau.  In addition to the athletic opportunities provided in powerlifting, I have traveled to many interesting places around the country and world and have met so many wonderful people. The people that I have met have become the basis for a strong support system for me in the powerlifting world. However, my strongest support system is that of my family. I am proud to say I am also a mother of three wonderful young men who have supported me throughout my life decisions as well as in pursuit of my goals through my powerlifting career.  I must also mention my other “child” Curly, my dog that I love dearly who is always by my side and another strong support system for me.

Sebrina Thumbs Up_Snapseed

So I guess the next question would be “how did I get involved in powerlifting?” I must say like many other powerlifters I started my athletic career in a different sport and then life circumstances and opportunities brought me to powerlifting. Track and Field was my chosen athletic catalyst and my love for competition blossomed in high school. I loved competing in track and field and worked hard to excel at the sport.  One of my greatest achievement in high school track and field was earning a slot to compete at the Texas relays.  The Texas Relays are still known as one of the premier track and field meets in the country held on the University of Texas campus in Austin Texas.  After high school, my athletic career was put on hold to pursue professional and personal opportunities that would help me grow as a young woman in society.

Sebrina Podium

Fast-forward almost twenty years later, I soon realized I needed to start a fitness program for myself. In 2010, I started lifting weights to tone up my body at a gym that had a few power lifters. After I began to interact with the powerlifters at the gym they suggested that I try some exercises that focused on the three powerlifting lifts – squat, bench, and deadlift. Next thing I knew I was soon ready to compete in my first powerlifting meet. I trained consistently for many months and the opportunity to compete in my first meet came at the Texas Longhorn Powerlifting on the campus of the University of Texas in Austin, Texas.  At the “Longhorn” I broke the Texas state and American (RAW) records in the squat (303lbs) and deadlift 148lbs and the Texas state bench record (148lbs). Needless to say my success at this meet stoked a fire in me and an excitement for competition that I have never felt before. I felt the drive to want to get stronger and do what was necessary for me to succeed in powerlifting.

It wasn’t long after the “Longhorn” meet that life temporarily put my powerlifting dreams on hold.  I found out that I had to have an important surgery which would force me to stop power lifting training. I was so disappointed at this point and thought my career that just started was over. I followed the doctor’s orders and took a break from lifting, which seemed like an eternity.  An eternity that last four months, but I never lost my competitive drive and love for the sport. When my doctor finally released me from my “ no lifting” sentence, it was like I never took a break.

Sebrina DL

A few months later one of the most influential people in powerlifting ask me to come train with the Bell Power Systems team in San Antonio, Texas. It was the man himself Gene Bell. After the quick interview it was no question he had the attitude and dedication that I needed to make me the lifter I wanted to be. Coach Bell took me under his wing and provided the training guidance and program that would help me reach my potential as a powerlifter. My first competition back after surgery was the 2010 Summer Power-fest in Spring Texas where I lifted 325lbs on squat, 413lbs on deadlift and 165lbs on bench press and rewarded winner of the open competition, masters and best lifter overall. My next meet was the 2011 USAPL Raw Nationals in Scranton, Pennsylvania where I won the masters division.  The following year in 2012 I won the open 84kg class title at the USAPL Raw National Championship. Later on in the year, I went on to compete in the IPF (Master’s) World Powerlifting Championships in Killeen, Texas where I was awarded a silver medal. With silver awarded and gold so close, it was time to reset goals for something bigger.

So I set my sights on preparation for the 2013 Arnold Sports Festival  (ASF) in March in Columbus, Ohio. My performance at the ASF’s NAPF Pro American meet produced another humbling experience, but I walked away feeling good about my performance.  After the Arnold, my past accomplishments were my motivation to improve other areas to help my training for the 2013 IPF Classic World Championships in Suzdal, Russia. Starting the journey with clear vision and goals really helped me keep everything in order. In addition, being blessed with amazing teammates such as Ian Bell, Kimberly Walford and Tina Robinson who helped comfort me made me feel at home during my trip to Russia.

Before I knew it, it was my moment to earn an opportunity to compete for a potential IPF Raw World Championship. All my training, support, and guidance came together for me to grab the moment on the top of the platform. I won GOLD in the IPF Classic women’s 72 kilo weight class lifting weighing in at 157lbs and lifting 347lbs on squat, 203lbs on bench and 457lbs on deadlift. My accomplishment became even more memorable when I realized that I had won the world championship with a nine for nine performance under strict IPF level judging. So what’s next for me after winning a world championship? I want to focus on my personal goals that I have to complete by the end of the year. The main goal is to deadlift 500lbs. A goal that I think is feasible because I have completed three repetitions of deadlift with 495lbs on the bar.  I believe my hard work and dedication to the sport, my Coach, family/teammates, and friends will help push me to make my goal a reality.

Finally, I want to say thank you to my family, Coach, and friends who have helped me realize and continue to help me realize my dreams in life and powerlifting. Additionally, I want to say thank you to Titan Support Systems, Inc. for providing me the best gear on the planet!!!

Sebrina Group


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